Electricians call on crossbench senators to support Government’s IR Bills

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21 November 2016

Master Electricians Australia has called on all crossbench senators to support the Federal Government on two key pieces of industrial relations legislation that are set to be voted on this coming sitting week.

The Senate is expected to vote on the Registered Organisations Bill on Monday, followed by legislation to reinstate the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) on Tuesday.

MEA Manager of Advisory Services Jason O’Dwyer said that the Australian building and construction industry has reached a crossroads on IR policy and urged all crossbench Senators to support both pieces of legislation.

“The Australian building and construction industry has reached a crossroads when it comes to industrial relations law in this country,” Mr O’Dwyer said.

“This week crossbench senators have a choice between allowing the CMFEU and ETU to continue flouting the laws with a blatant disregard, or to pass the Government’s IR Bills and in the process restore both the rule of law and productivity to the industry.

“There are currently 113 CFMEU officials before the courts, suspected of more than 1,100 contraventions of the law, which is why MEA fully supports the reintroduction of an industry watchdog.

“The Government’s IR Bills are essential to restoring productivity on construction sites around the country, which has nose-dived since the ABCC was scrapped in 2012.

Mr O’Dwyer said that the passing of the Federal Government’s IR Bills is of paramount importance to electrical contractors right throughout Australia.

“MEA cannot overstate just how important these Bills are to our members,”

“Far too many electrical contractors have faced threats from the CFMEU and ETU that they will not be awarded contracts for certain worksites unless they sign exorbitant Union Enterprise Bargaining Agreements.

“The culture that has infested the industry and is the root cause of this intimidation must change and the only way to do that is by passing both of the Government’s IR Bills.

“We desperately urge all the crossbench senators to support these two vital pieces of legislation, otherwise bullying behaviour and dwindling productivity will continue to grind the industry to a halt.”

Jason O’Dwyer is available for interview. Please phone SAS Group on 0467 792 013.